Nutrition science graduate Jacqui Toumbas shows an entrepreneur’s heart

First published 7 May 2020

Jacqui Toumbas has been combining her love of wholesome food and community with an entrepreneurial spirit since graduating from QUT’s Bachelor of Health Science (Nutrition) in 2015.

Owner and founder of Miss Bliss Whole Foods Kitchen, Jacqui was recently recognised by 10 News First Queensland for redirecting her café to support healthcare workers and the elderly during the COVID-19 crisis through a Pay It Forward scheme. Under the scheme, community members can purchase meals for delivery to an elderly person in need or a healthcare worker who is working long hours.

Recognising and responding to a need is at the heart of entrepreneurship—a simple, yet powerful, quality that has threaded through Jacqui’s life along with a love for community. Her West End location began as a fruit market where, every day for about 45 years, its former owner, Jacqui’s grandfather and their Greek mates would hang out to play cards and drink coffee together. When Jacqui’s father learned that the fruit market was going to be sold, he decisively bought it to ensure its community tradition lived on. Years later, in 2015, Jacqui repurposed it to meet a modern take on continuing needs: healthy food and community.

 “My goal was to open somewhere to eat healthy food that my dad could go with me and enjoy. I also wanted to run a café that people could go that felt like family.” Jacqui said.

Her café menu boasts wholesome, traditional Greek food as well as fan favourites.

“We serve my grandmother’s spanakopita at the café. We don’t use any fillers, only good quality whole food ingredients.”

Jacqui also serves ‘everyday’ meals, with some adjustments to make them fresh and healthy: locally sourced ingredients, including preservative-free bread and bacon cooked without excess fat.

“Whole food is also about using local and seasonal produce. That’s the basic principle of the traditional Greek and Mediterranean diet anyway—to use food that’s in season.” Jacqui said.

Read more about Jacqui’s professional journey here.

Watch the 10 News First Queensland reel here.

Browse our Health courses to learn more about degrees, such as the Bachelor of Nutrition ScienceBachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics (Honours) or double bachelor’s degree in Communication (Professional Communication) and Nutrition Science.